Last week was one to forget for Wisconsin fans. The week did not generate nearly as much intrigue across the national landscape outside of the upsetting loss.
This weekend has a stellar slate of games across all windows, including the Badgers fighting for redemption against Ohio State.
Here is a glimpse of the top match-ups across a great viewing weekend.
Thursday, Oct. 24
No. 16 SMU (7-0) at Houston (3-4) —> 6:30 p.m. CST on ESPN
SMU is one of the last remaining unbeaten teams. The Mustangs have a high powered offense run by former Texas quarterback Shane Buechele. Head coach Sonny Dykes is known as an offensive savant and SMU is off to a hot start. A conference clash on the road against Houston will not be easy. Houston has slid considerably, but anytime you have a conference foe anything can happen. SMU will look to make a statement as the only college game on TV.
Friday, Oct. 25
USC (4-3) at Colorado (3-4) —> 8 p.m. CST on ESPN2
USC already has three losses, but only one has come in conference. USC still has a chance to win the South division if they win out. Colorado has been a wild ride this season. After beating Nebraska and Arizona State they have lost three in a row. This matchup is not super juicy, but for a Friday it’s pretty solid. The over/under is 63 for this game, so there could be some Friday night fireworks.
Saturday, Oct. 26
No. 13 Wisconsin (6-1) at No. 3 Ohio State (7-0) —> 11 a.m. CST on FOX
Ohio State has steamrolled opponents in their first seven games. Wisconsin is coming off of a shocking conference loss at the hands of Illinois. Wisconsin will look to get back on track against the Buckeyes in what should be a big-time early game. The top two defense in the country square off in this one, and whichever team is able to contain the other is likely to win.
No. 7 Oklahoma (7-0) at Kansas State (4-2) —> 11 a.m. CST on ABC
Outside of the Sooner Schooner wipeout, everything has been going right for Jalen Hurts and the Sooners. The offense has been unstoppable, and the defense has been greatly improved under the leadership of new defensive coordinator Alex Grinch. Kansas State was once ranked, but then fell to Oklahoma State and Baylor in back-to-back weeks. After a bounce back win over TCU, Kansas State will look to upset the Sooners.
No. 20 Iowa (5-2) at Northwestern (1-5) —> 11 a.m. CST on ESPN2
This game makes the list because of the Big Ten West division race. Iowa only has one conference loss, and everyone knows the horrors that can await teams at Ryan Field during a day game. If Iowa sleep walks, this game could be interesting. Northwestern has struggled mightily this season, but the Wildcats usually play Iowa close.
Other morning games of interest: Miami at Pittsburgh, Mississippi State at Texas A&M, Illinois at Purdue, Harvard at Princeton (great FCS matchup).
No. 9 Auburn (6-1) at No. 2 LSU (7-0) —> 2:30 p.m. CST on CBS
This is the game of the day. Auburn has been tremendous this season outside of a loss on the road to Florida. Freshman quarterback Bo Nix continues to talk and play with confidence. Traveling down to the bayou though will be a whole different animal. LSU has played like one of the top teams in the country. Ed Orgeron has his team playing exceptionally well, and has taken on one of the toughest schedules in the country to get to their undefeated mark. The battle of the SEC Tigers should be a good one.
No. 6 Penn State (7-0) at Michigan State (4-3) —> 2:30 p.m. CST on ABC
Penn State has played well this season. However, the Nittany Lions have survived close calls on the road against Pittsburgh and Michigan. Sean Clifford is a first year starter, but the PSU defense is no joke. Michigan State has upset PSU the past two seasons, could they do it again? Michigan State has a solid defense, but has struggled doing much of anything offensively. I expect this game to be low scoring and close throughout.
Oklahoma State (4-3) at 23 Iowa State (5-2) —> 2:30 p.m. CST on FS1
Iowa State has jumped back into the polls after three straight conference wins. Oklahoma State just left the rankings after losses to Texas Tech and Baylor. Momentum screams Iowa State in this game, especially at home, but this game could get funky.
Other afternoon games of interest: Maryland at Minnesota, Texas at TCU, Virginia at Louisville, Indiana at Nebraska, North Dakota State at South Dakota State (College GameDay).
No. 8 Notre Dame (5-1) at No. 19 Michigan (5-2) —> 6:30 p.m. CST on ABC
Michigan has had a tough schedule. The Wolverines have lost to both Wisconsin and Penn State on the road. This time they are at home against a Notre Dame team who narrowly lost on the road against Georgia. Notre Dame still has playoff aspirations. If the Irish want to continue to get back into playoff contention a win over Michigan is a prerequisite. With the goals of both teams on the brink there should be spirited efforts from both sides.
Other primetime games of interest: UCF at Temple, Arizona State and UCLA, Missouri at Kentucky.
California (4-3) at No. 12 Utah (6-1) —> 9 p.m. CST on FS1
Utah has been cruising since an early loss to USC on the road. While the Utes should take care of business in late night action, “Pac-12 After Dark” can stir up some demons. In fact, Cal has already defeated a highly ranked Washington team on the road this season. Can former Wisconsin defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox pull off another upset?
Washington State (4-3) at No. 11 Oregon (6-1) —> 9:30 p.m. CST on ESPN
Oregon has rebounded nicely since an opening week loss to Auburn. The Ducks have flown their way to six straight victories, and they seem to be on pace to have a collision course with Utah in the Pac-12 championship. Oregon is a two touchdown favorite, but Mike Leach brings a potent offense in to take on Oregon’s stout defense.